Frequently Asked Questions
Passport Realty gives you the more than For Sale by Owner for $200 Less.
What Realtors will Not tell you.
Do I need to list in my local MLS?
Is this legal?
Too Busy to show your house?
What are the steps in the process?
How long does it take to get my home on the MLS?
Do I have to sign the Limited Service Listing Agreement?
Why does the Limited Service Listing Agreement show a Listing Broker receiving a commission?
Can I sell By Owner while my home is listed on the MLS?
Do I have to offer a commission to the Buyer’s Agent?
Does it help to offer a Bonus to the Buyer’s Agent?
Do REALTORS show your homes?
Does my name appear on Realtor.com
Do I need a Showing Service?
Do I need a Lock Box or Realtor Lockbox?
Can I use a For Sale By Owner sign?
Does newspaper advertising help?
How Many Photos Can I Send?
Does it help to have more than one photo?
How do people find my home when it is listed on the MLS?
NOTE: In order to keep our prices low we require that certain Policies and Procedures be observed by both our Agents and our Clients. We would like you to know those policies in advance to avoid any confusion about our services. Scroll to the bottom of this page to review our Policies and Procedures details.
What Realtors will Not Tell You. In the 2013 NAR (National Association of Realtors) Study, the most recent, only 7% of Realtors that listed a house sold that house. Why in the world would you pay a 3% listing fee when there is only 7 out of 100 chances the Realtor you list with will actually sell your most valuable asset. Passport Realty can assist you in every aspect of selling or buying a home. We can offer full support, answer any questions and Only charge you for what you get from us.
Do I need to list in my local MLS? 92 % of Buyers looking for homes to buy go to www.Realtor.com First. By listing with PassportRealty.com you will be on Realtor.com. Passport Realty, Inc. is a Florida Corporation. Any Realtor that tells you they can list in any state is Not telling you the truth. They may have an office in another state where they are affiliated and list through that office. Passport Realty is transparent and tells you the truth. In Florida many Realtor Associations are members of MLS Advantage which can only be accessed if your are a member of The Florida Association of Realtors. This excellent tool allows all Florida Realtors to find all information, including commissions you are offering to a Realtor selling your home, that you allow us to place in your MLS Listing. This being said many Florida Realtors do not even know this tool exists. If you want to make sure a local Realtor finds your home to sell it is recommended you list on your local MLS. Passport Realty can cooperate with Realtors in your state to make sure your home is listed in your area’s local MLS. Remember the main reason to list on a MLS is to give your home exposure to as many Buyers as possible, i.e. be on Realtor.com
The fact that it is legal does not make it popular and there are many people in the Real Estate industry who are actively lobbying to have the Florida Real Estate Commission and the State Legislature enact regulations, rules, and laws that make it difficult or impossible to offer the service that we offer. They have not yet succeeded in enacting such rules, regulations or laws, but they continue to try.
The Real Estate Lobby is very powerful. There are nearly 600,000 licensed real estate agents and brokers in Florida and most of them do business the traditional way, charging a 6% commission to List (3%) and Sell (3%) your home. They dislike the way that PassportRealty.com provides services, but, they can not prevent us from offering our services the way that we do.
Be sure to mention to your elected officials that you support the right of real estate agents and brokers to offer Flat Price MLS Listing services. It will help us to stay in business to benefit you now and in the future.
Many people that list their houses with us are very busy or elect not to show their properties. PassportRealty.com offers a service to schedule appointments and show your home for you. Our agents offer all the services a real estate agent would acting as a cooperating agent to assist you with the sale of your property. They schedule the appointments, show your house, and write contracts from the prospective buyers. They submit the contracts to you, write counter offers if necessary. They assist you and the buyer with inspections, the WDO, and set a time for closing. For this service you as the seller would compensate them at closing according to the commission you agreed to pay a buyer’s agent in your contract. In this case our agents are acting as cooperating agents.
REGISTER as an Owner, then complete the MLS Input Form. This is the information that goes onto the MLS and we require you to provide us that information. We will send you a set of Listing Documents as email attachments. You will need to print out the documents, review them, call us with any questions, initial or sign all pages as appropriate and as indicated. Fax the Listing Documents back to us at 800-345-1867 . Send us the Photo or Photos of your home. Remember that these must be .JPG files. Please make the files no larger than 200K in size. Make Payment. We do require payment in advance of putting your home on the MLS. We offer the option of paying by Credit Card. When we have received all of the above back in our office we will list your property on the MLS.
How long does it take to get my home on the MLS? We promise to have your home listed on the MLS by the close of business on the business day (Mon-Fri) following the day when you complete all the required steps. We will NOT list your home on the MLS until you have completed your documentation. We will list without your photos, but, we VERY MUCH PREFER that you provide your photos prior to our listing your home on the MLS.
Do I have to sign the Limited Service Listing Agreement? Yes. We are required by both Florida Law and by the Policies of the MLS system to have the Limited Service Listing Agreement signed before we can place your listing on the MLS system.
Why does the Limited Service Listing Agreement show a Listing Broker receiving a commission? Because to use the MLS system you MUST offer a commission of at least $1.00 to the Buyer’s Agent. This is a requirement that can not be avoided.
Commission rates are changing, it would be prudent to see what other sellers are offering as commissions. Typically properties from $70,000 to $300,000 usually compensate a Buyer’s Agent 3% commission, properties from $300,000 to $750,000 usually compensate a Buyer’s Agent 2.5% commission, and properties over $750,000 usually compensate a Buyer’s Agent 2% commission (once you get over $1,000,000 it is prudent to see what other sellers are offering as commission), however, you have the legal right to offer any commission that you want so long as you offer at least $1.00 (some MLS’s have other minimum requirements). Of course, if you offer only $1.00 you will not get very many Buyer’s Agents to help you find a Buyer.
If you offer a commission of the above, you will have the same level of Selling Agent activity that any other house would have that offers that same level of commission.
Can I sell By Owner while my home is listed on the MLS? Yes. That is the great thing about how we do business. We want you to sell your home at a minimum of cost. We pride ourselves on offering the same marketing services that any ‘traditional’ agent does. We just do it at a lower cost.
However, PassportRealty.com is careful to protect the ‘value’ of our brand. We want all of our clients to benefit from a good image and reputation for PassportRealty.com listings on the MLS. If we get the reputation as having a lot of listings where the Buyer’s Agent can only earn $1.00, or $1,000, or 1%, or 1.5%, etc., then the value of our service to all of our clients will be diminished. Therefore, we recommend the following Commission rates: Typically properties from $70,000 to $300,000 usually compensate a Buyer’s Agent 3% commission, properties from $300,000 to $750,000 usually compensate a Buyer’s Agent 2.5% commission, and properties over $750,000 usually compensate a Buyer’s Agent 2% commission, however, you have the legal right to offer any commission that you want so long as you offer at least $1.00. Of course, if you offer only $1.00 you will not get very many Selling Agents (Buyer’s Agents) to help you find a Buyer. commission for properties listed with Buyer’s Agent Commissions. We recommend that you offer Buyer’s Agents a commission to them to show your property to their prospective buyers. We recommend that you offer a commission of 3% however, all commissions are negotiable. If you decide to offer less than 2% for properties less than $400,000, you will incur a $400.00 surcharge. If you decide to offer less than $8,000 for properties over $400,000, you will incur a $400.00 surcharge.
Do I need a Lock Box? No… BUT, if you do not have a lock box you will need to be on-call during normal hours to open your home to prospective Buyers and their Agents. Having a lock box on your home makes it so much easier on everyone that we highly recommend it. We can sell you a lockbox, however it is less expensive for you to go to Home Depot, Lowe’s, etc. and buy one. Some of our Sellers ask is it necessary to have a Realtor Lockbox. The answer is No. We can certainly provide one however the cost is $300.00. The reason it is so expensive is we have to mail it to you, it weighs approximately 4 pounds and then we physically have to come to your property and take it off once you sell your property.
Does newspaper advertising help? Yes, but, not as much as you might think. In Florida there have been surveys that indicate as many as 90% of all home buyers use the Internet to find a home. By using the local newspaper you are spending a lot of money to reach people that are already being reached when you list on the MLS.
How Many Photos Can I Send? You can send us up to 25 photos, depending on what Package you purchase. We can place up to 25 photos on the MLS system. Not all websites will display all 25 photos. We strongly recommend a Virtual Tour of your house. It is better to have a professional photographer who specializes in home photography to do your virtual tour and usually it does not cost much more to have them do your ‘still” photos. Remember, “a picture is worth a thousand words.”
We believe 25 Photos are overkill, unless you have a 6 bedroom house and over 6,000 square feet. Most studies state only the first 10 photos will be viewed and the Most Important one is your First Photo displayed.
REALTOR.com displays a maximum of 25 photos
PassportRealty.com displays a maximum of 25 photos
Does it help to have more than one photo? Yes, by making someone come into your home to see the inside you are likely going to make a better impression than allowing them to see the photos that never do the inside justice in the way they present your home.
There are other people who believe that the majority of Buyers are now accustomed to seeing lots of photos and homes with only a few photos will be less likely to be visited than homes with lots of photos.
We tend to agree that more photos is better than less photos.
What local websites will have my home listed? We can not provide a list of websites where your home will be listed, but, the vast majority of local MLS Member Brokers have websites where visitors can search the local MLS ‘public’ information to search for a home of interest.
Counties Included in Listed Packages. Counties included in the listed Packages are Alachua, Baker, Bradford, Broward, Clay, Columbia, Duval, Flagler, Hamilton, Nassau, palm Beach, Putnam, St. Johns, Suwannee, and Union. Your property will be listed in the NEFMLS (Northeast Florida Multiple Listing Service). Additional prices for other counties in Florida and other MLS’s, usually only an extra $150.
What is Consultation? Consultation is when you are talking directly with one of PassportRealty.com’s Real Estate Agents, Brokers, Staff or Realtors. They can help you with many questions concerning your property from listing it to what certain phrases in contracts actually mean, to explaining various aspects of Real Estate. The time does not apply when talking with our administrative staff.
We promise to list your home on the MLS not later than the next business day from when you complete ALL steps. But you must complete ALL STEPS before we can make that guarantee. This applies to the above counties. Other counties may take 3 -4 days.
We list properties Monday – Friday. Cutoff time for the Weekend is 5:00 PM on Thursday.
Be Advised: REALTOR.com and other websites may take several days to get your information from the MLS system. We do not guarantee immediate posting of your MLS information on REALTOR.com or any other website.
We will attempt to list the same day if you get ALL documents and photos to us prior to noon that day, but we will not guarantee the listing until the next business day.
We list properties only with complete documents.
You Must Verify the accuracy of your home’s details prior to our listing it on the MLS. Verification requires that you review the MLS Listing Details on our system then notify us that the information is correct.
We allow you to change the Price on a monthly basis.
Photo changes are limited to one photo change per month.
Descriptions may be changed once every month.
Seller Obligations Seller agrees to notify broker within 24 hours after their contract is pending. Seller agrees to notify broker within 24 hours once their property is sold. Seller agrees to include real estate agent’s name and identification number if appropriate and the actual selling price.
We can not violate the above policies and procedures without charging special